Yes, unequivocally there is the happy side of being vegan. We are not angry as most people assume. You see, my choices are mine alone. I live and talk by example and while I don’t expect to move mountains by this advocacy I embrace and support, my heart sings in utter joy whenever I see or know someone who’s trying to transition either to plant-based or vegan food. I have already shared how this diet helped me reverse my health issues or how this lifestyle has humbled and liberated me more than words can describe (read how to transition); but really, at the end of the day it is your choice. But let me tell you something interesting about plant nutrition that can possibly impact one’s mental and emotional state.
In medical terms, there’s what we call arachidonic acid that is present in our body. It is a polyunsaturated omega 6-fatty acid that is found in red meat, chicken and eggs. There is a clinical study that links elevated arachidonic acid to increased incidence of depressive and sad state and while there are more studies needed for this direct correlation, there is another study which links eating more fruits and vegetables to the production of serotonin (chemical in the brain that triggers our happy mood). Dr. Michael Greger has a more in-depth explanation so here is his article because he can tell you more about medical facts, being that he is the go-to resource for everything plant-based medicine.
But anecdotally, I can personally attest how going vegan (read my decade-old journey) changed the way I deal with life overall. At one point in my late 20s, my doctor wanted to put me on antidepressants because I manifested symptoms but I declined. I worked my way out and triumphed by turning to plant-based and active lifestyle. Even my friends who knew me from many many years ago tell me that there is an aura of calmness and positivity in me, like nothing seems to faze me anymore. I happily eat and look forward to every meal. Being hangry is non-existent. More than that, I feel energized and unknowingly project a happy disposition. Strangers seem to smile or smile back so I don’t really know if I have a pasted semi-smile (Monalisa-like) in my face. And to be honest, I didn’t even know that I have a “composed and calming voice” until some of my viewers on Youtube pointed that. I’m like really? this is not the same me I knew in my early 20s!
One thing is certain though. I know for a fact that I am happy because I am feeding my body healthy. The fact that I am preparing myself for old age and trying to defy the chronic diseases that may possibly go with it by eating healthy makes me happy. The little impact that I have started around me makes me happy. And the fact that I can express my compassion to animals by being vegan makes me happy. My point is, we all have different ways to make our voices heard. So not everyone is angry. I choose to be happy.
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